San Pietro in Mavino

San Pietro in Mavino

San Pietro in Mavino Roberto Bigi

The Church of San Pietro in Mavino is located on the tip of the peninsula of Sirmione del Garda on top of a hill overlooking the entire lake. The local environment is rich and stratified since it stands over the famous Thermal Spa of Catullo and the church was built over a pre-existing pagan temple.

The Church of San Pietro in Mavino is the oldest church in Sirmione. Three-quarters of the exterior of the current building of S.Pietro remains visible. Only the north side, expanded with the addition of newly constructed residential environments, is not open to visitors, since it is part of a privately-owned property.

The name most likely originates from the Latin term "ad summa vineas": place of the vineyards positioned up high. In fact, the church is surrounded by olive trees in a charming spot, to say the least. It was built in the Lombard age, in the 8th century BC, with subsequent changes made in the 11th (the Romanesque bell tower ) and 14th centuries.

Inside you can admire frescoes dating back to the 12th -16th century: in the smaller apses you will find a Crucifix with the Madonna and Saints and a 14th-century Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints. The fresco in the middle apse is also from the same period. In the mid- 19th century, because of its location off the beaten path, it was inhabited by a hermit. The surrounding area, formerly used as a cemetery, was settled in the 19th century. From 1955 the churchyard bell, referred to as "Julia," recalls with her sonorous tolling, the victims of the two world wars.

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